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Old 06-06-08, 09:36 PM   #1
lexbubble
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electric bike and moped comparison

I was hoping that you all could compare e bikes to mopeds. By mopeds I mean 50cc and under. Of course mopeds much larger than that are like motorcycles and can't be compared to ebikes. So how are they similar in terms of speed, power, safety, and practicality.
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Old 06-06-08, 09:54 PM   #2
PunkMartyr
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moped Id go honda if you have the $

http://youtube.com/watch?v=SGBaU7RiOqQ

Never ridden either though
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Old 06-07-08, 10:46 PM   #3
Robert C
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First, by moped it is important to be clear what is meant. I feel you did this and am glad to see it. Many people call any small motorcycle a moped whit no knowledge of what a moped is. As you made clear, a Moped is, generally, 50cc or less. It also has working pedals.

I have had a moped, an e-bike, and an electric scooter. It really depends on what you want it for. In the states the moped has a significant problem of being neither fish nor fowl. They are not permitted in bicycles only areas and many riders are not comfortable with mixing with regular traffic. There are often licensing and registration requirements for mopeds. Mopeds were extremely popular in America in the 80's but were all but legislated out of existence. They went from being a special class of bicycles, with almost no restrictions on use, to a special class of motorcycles, with many restrictions.

The electric scooter is in a similar place as the moped. It does not fit neatly into the existing structure.

The electric bicycle is in a unique place, it is currently in the same place that mopeds were in in the 80's. This gives it a unique advantage that it can be used and ridden as a bicycle.

As far as which is better, first I will say that the electric scooter is the worst choice. I only have one because it fills a unique nitch here in China that does not exist in America. The moped is better in that it provides far greater range, the weakness of electric bicycles, and slightly more power. However, the electric bike is better in that it does not have the licensing and registration requirements, it is easy to fuel, just plug it in. Further, it can be treated like a bicycle, this means paths and bicycle parking areas. The lack of petrol fumes means that it is more welcome indoors.

It really comes down to what you need, what are your range requirements? What is your parking situation like?

Back to the question
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So how are they similar in terms of speed, power, safety, and practicality
Speed, the Moped is faster.

Power, The moped has more (generally) but it is hard to compare electric to petrol power, they feel different.

Safety, this is a tough one, there are too many variables. Mopeds often use small motorcycle parts instead of bicycle parts. This may mean that they are more durable. They are often physically larger and may have better suspension parts. However, a bicycle can be built in nearly any way you want so it is hard to answer this one. Moped riders tend to think and act as a small motorcycle instead of as a bicycle If you go this route I would encourage you to look into a basic motorcycle riders safety course. safely has more to do with the rider than the machine.

Practicality, like I said, what is it that you need? range? parking?
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Old 06-08-08, 12:37 AM   #4
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if you go with more advanced battery chemistry's you can get quite a fair bit or range out of an ebike. My recommendation would really depend on where you live, in California you can get an M2 license and build a fairly tame ebike that goes 30mph legaly. Or if you are of the "fight the man" group you can just build what amounts to an electric motor cycle on a bike frame. I personaly think drivers notice me a lot more when they see me going 45, thus leading to increased safety. I dont have a moped to compare with but as far as cars, I can acellerate off a red light much faster then cars and stop much faster then cars, all while being able to get out of they way much faster. If you do go with the electric motor cycle on a bike frame i would highly recomend you get fairly hight end equipment, disc brakes, steel frame thick tires and other such things. I am also fairly certain that ebikes are cheaper then mopeds but I could be way off on that.
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Old 06-08-08, 12:44 AM   #5
cerewa
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If you do go with the electric motor cycle on a bike frame i would highly recomend you get fairly hight end equipment, disc brakes, steel frame thick tires and other such things. I am also fairly certain that ebikes are cheaper then mopeds but I could be way off on that.
Many a good motor scooter is far cheaper than a high power 45mph crystalyte kit with lithium batteries. On the other hand, the really inexpensive e-bike setups are far cheaper than any working gas scooter/moped i've heard of.
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Old 12-21-08, 12:42 PM   #6
chizno
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New 2009 model electric moped out - it's called the XM-5000Li - It's got an 85 Mile range at cruising speeds and can go up to 60 MPH. Amazing. It's got a lithium battery bank, ABS, the works. Really nice.
Here's the link: http://www.wattcycle.com/shop/home.php?cat=262
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